Friday, December 23, 2016

Peralta Trail and Weaver's Needle

It had been a while since we had hiked the Peralta Trail to Fremont Saddle with a view of Weaver's Needle. This day seemed perfect since it was a cool 55 degrees when we started the climb. The parking lot on Saturdays can be packed since there are a couple of trails that start here so we got a early start. We didn't see many hikers until we were almost done.
Fremont Saddle
A young lady with a small boy in her backpack asked how much further and then told Joe, the baby, 30 more minutes and continued to tell him stories as she walked by. This reminded me of times that I would load Krista and Michael into their wagon and take them for a walk down the river path near our home when they were small. I would have to pad it with a quilt to reduce the bouncing and pack a lunch. They enjoyed spending the day playing by the river and eventually in the river and a picnic.

I find hiking helps me get lost in my thoughts and go back to times that I don't think about often but are my real treasures of life.
This hike is not only up hill 1900 feet in 2.2 miles but plenty of obstacles to step over and around.

Balancing Rock
There were a couple of opportunities to bag a couple of virtual geocaches on this hike.

Superstition Mountains

Amazing spires along the path

Glad we had a cold drink waiting for us in the Jeep when we returned to the trailhead.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

The dangers of living in a 55+ Resort

While walking down the side of the street, I heard a screeching noise behind me. As I turned around, a big clunky bike was barreling towards me. The lady didn't see me until I yelled and she looked surprised that I was there, said "oops" and kept riding to her tennis game. How she hits the tennis ball, I have no idea.

Often while driving, we see a person coming right towards us on our side of the road and often don't see us until we honk. Living on a corner lot, I often wonder if someone will miss the turn and run into us because they can't see at night.. Fortunately, there are not many people out at night.

It has been a good experience staying in a 55+ place as we prepare to leave. There is so much to do and plenty of people around even if they can't see real well.

Papago Park is along the bike path that we rode from Tempe to Scottsdale. We saw these butts lined up along the ridge as we rode along. Kind unusual to see them in the middle of the city.

Scottsdale is all geared up for the season.

Papago Park

Bridge across Tempe Town Lake.

Even though I have "retired", I called Banner staffing to see if I could return to work one day a week since we were staying for a few months. They said "Sure, come on back". I am glad it is only one day a week for a little while. Those tune ups (people and vehicle) got a bit spendy this year.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Mormon Christmas

This is our third year visiting the East Valley of Phoenix for the "season" and it was time to visit the lights of the Mormon Temple and Christmas scenes. Sometimes, it is nice to do something that doesn't involve sweat and dirt.
Visiting the Mesa Arizona Temple during the Christmas season is a feast of both sight and sound.
Hundreds of thousands of decorative lights covering ground-level flower beds to towering-tall palm trees illuminate the north lawn with Christmas music playing in the background..

We expected large crowds but were pleasantly surprised to find them not too big.

Inside the visitors’ center is the annual nativity display. There is a collection of nearly 100 crèches from around the world.

A life-sized white sculptured nativity that appears to float on a negative reflection pool in front of the temple, and a blazing star lights up a large, traditional nativity imported from Italy with a neighboring shepherds’ field.

It was a good way to spend an evening getting into the holiday spirit.

Cuenca, Ecuador

An Expat Destination The morning after returning to Quito we boarded an hour-long flight to Cuenca. Driving up the winding roads would have ...